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Marler Blog Providing Commentary on Food Poisoning Outbreaks & Litigation

Chicken Quesadillas from Farm Rich in Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Mississippi, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin with E. coli O121

Information available to date indicates that consumption of Farm Rich brand frozen food products is one likely source of infection for the ill persons in this outbreak.

Testing conducted by the New York State Department of Health, Wadsworth Center Laboratory, identified the outbreak strain of STEC O121 in an open package of Farm Rich brand frozen chicken quesadillas from an ill person’s home.

On March 28, 2013, Rich Products Corporation recalled approximately 196,222 pounds of Farm Rich brand frozen chicken quesadillas and several other frozen mini meals and snack items because they might be contaminated with E. coli O121.

The CDC reports a total of 24 individuals infected with the outbreak strain of STEC O121 have been reported from 15 states. The number of ill persons identified in each state is as follows: Alabama (1), Arkansas (1), Illinois (1), Indiana (2), Michigan (2), Mississippi (1), New York (3), Ohio (3), Pennsylvania (1), South Dakota (1), Texas (3), Utah (1), Virginia (1), Washington (1), and Wisconsin (2).

78% of ill persons are 21 years of age or younger.  33% of ill persons have been hospitalized. One ill person developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a type of kidney failure, and no deaths have been reported.